nimbus

[nim-buh s]

noun, plural nim·bi [nim-buh bahy] /ˈnɪm bəbaɪ/, nim·bus·es.

Classical Mythology. a shining cloud sometimes surrounding a deity when on earth.
a cloud, aura, atmosphere, etc., surrounding a person or thing: The candidate was encompassed with a nimbus of fame.
the type of dense clouds or cloud mass with ragged edges, that yields rain or snow; a rain cloud.
(initial capital letter) U.S. Aerospace. one of a series of polar-orbiting meteorological and environmental research satellites, the last of which Nimbus 7, launched 1978, was the first satellite designed to monitor atmospheric pollutants.

Origin of nimbus

1610–20; < Latin: a rainstorm, rain cloud, thundercloud, cloud; akin to Latin nebula and Greek nephélē, néphos cloud
Related formsnim·bused, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for nimbus


British Dictionary definitions for nimbus

nimbus

noun plural -bi (-baɪ) or -buses

  1. a dark grey rain-bearing cloud
  2. (in combination)cumulonimbus clouds
  1. an emanation of light surrounding a saint or deity
  2. a representation of this emanation
a surrounding aura or atmosphere
Derived Formsnimbused, adjective

Word Origin for nimbus

C17: from Latin: cloud, radiance
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for nimbus
n.

1610s, "bright cloud surrounding a god," from Latin nimbus "cloud," perhaps related to nebula "cloud, mist" (see nebula). Meaning "halo" is first recorded c.1730. Meteorological sense of "a rain cloud" is from 1803.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Science definitions for nimbus

nimbus

[nĭmbəs]

Plural nimbi (nĭmbī′) nimbuses

A rain cloud.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.